Thursday, August 5

March Madness 2021: An Idiot Guide to Completing Your NCAA Tournament Draw

It’s your money and your NCAA tournament pool, so we can’t really tell you what to do with either one. But if you don’t want to throw your cash away or be more tightly controlled on Zoom calls, you may want to pay close attention to the following tips.

In what has become an annual thing every time March Madness takes place, Sporting News presents an idiotic guide to completing an NCAA tournament draw.

March Madness Support: A Guide for Idiots

1. Picking double-digit seeds to win is smart, until it’s smart. Games 12-5 and 13-4 are some of the most competitive matchups in the first round, but sticking with a bracket eliminator beyond the round of 32 is reckless. The lowest seed to win a title in the 64-team era (1985-present) is Villanova, eighth seed in ’85. Connecticut was the seventh seed in 2014.

2. Blue is still the uniform color of champions. Blueblood shows Kentucky and Duke aren’t at the dance this year, but you can still rock with Gonzaga, Michigan, and Illinois. They all wear blue in their outfits and are also among the tournament favorites. Kansas and defending champion Virginia can also be played as seeds.

3. If you like to make pet-based selections, So you have some beauties to choose from this March Madness, including Antelopes (Grand Canyon), Bonnies (San Buenaventura), Gaels (Iona), Gauchos (California-Santa Barbara), Mean Green (North Texas) and Ramblers (Loyola- Chicago ). But if you like funky AND functional, go for this group: Zags, Illini, Wolverines, and Jayhawks.

MORE: Get your March Madness printable media here

4. Only choose your alma mater to go all the way if you are a true contender. Basketball and college football are the only sports where the use of “we” by fans is acceptable, but don’t go overboard with that benefit. Put feelings aside, use your intellect, and acknowledge the limitations of your school.

5. More than ever, 8v9 games are coin tosses. The tournament committee adjusted the criteria for seeding the field this year, relying on rankings rather than geography, so the differences between schools in the middle of the parenthesis figure will be narrower. Now if you are using one currency to choose all the games. . . we have nothing but “good luck”.

6. You can no longer choose a school based on how well its head coach dresses. Coaches have swapped sports coats and suits for fleece jerseys, polo shirts and sweatshirts, continuing a trend that began last year in the NBA bubble. No more sartorial splendor from Jay Wright or Tony Bennett; Everything is Bob Huggins chic now. Unrelated: “Bob Huggins” and “chic” are words that don’t belong together in a sentence, but here we are.

DeCOURCY: The Secrets of Bob Huggins’ Success – Who Knows Him Best

7. Big conferences almost always win the trophy. Thirty-one of the 32 NCAA Division I men’s basketball conferences are competing in this year’s tournament (the Ivy League did not play at all this season). However, half a dozen leagues run March Madness: ACC, Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC have combined for 32 of the 35 national titles since 1985. No. 1 overall favorite Gonzaga (West Coast Conference ) is the outsider who is best equipped to counter that trend this year.

8. A No. 16 seed has beaten a No. 1 seed once. Could it happen again this year? Of course. It will? No, not even in a season where chaos has been the default state.

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